Megan Fryday: Keeping Faith
Nothing in the world of sports is more frustrating than dealing with injuries, including majors one like tearing an ACL. One can only imagine the pain of the injury, the process of the surgery, the rehab process, and then trying to get back to the form that you were once in before the injury occurred. But nobody can imagine going through the same process twice and that's the situation Megan Fryday found herself in.
Megan was due for another outstanding season after having a breakout year during her junior season. She batted .413 at the plate and her stellar defensive play at shortstop made her one of the best two way players any coach can find. But just the sixth game into the 2015 season she tore her right ACL on a defensive play. When the injury occurred, Megan immediately knew that it wasn't going to be good news as she has already been in this situation before. "As soon as the injury happened I knew it wasn't going to be good. I tore my left ACL playing volleyball my senior year of high school so I had somewhat of a good idea for what it felt like. As soon as my right knee popped and I hit the ground, I had a feeling it was over," said Megan. She was coming off her best collegiate season leading the way for the Cougars batting .413 at the plate and making spectacular plays at shortstop but it just didn't go the way anyone expected it to. One can also only imagine what was going though coach Johnson's head when the injury occurred as him and Megan have a close coach and player relationship. "My biggest concern for her was her well-being when the injury happened. I was hoping for the best but expecting the worst. I was disappointed things didn't go the way she wanted and I was concerned how the team would adapt now with her gone," said Johnson. With Megan being the only primary shortstop on the roster, the biggest challenge was filling in the hole at shortstop as well as hitting in the lineup. The Cougars adjusted nicely as they were able to reach Regionals but fell one game shy of Super Regionals. If Megan were to be healthy this past season, you could of possibly see the Cougars making the World Series.
Megan's role as a senior captain didn't change despite her injury. She still had a voice to help and motivate her teammates game after game and help those who had to switch positions to fill in the voids of the team. Megan has the chance to come back and finish up her collegiate career but that remains as the question at hand. She took last semester off from the nursing program to enjoy the softball season but that didn't go according to plan. The question will be if she can balance out her schedule of softball, nursing program, and also being a Resident Assistant in the dorms. Megan has stated if she needed to drop softball then she would so that she can finish school on time. "Softball would be the first to go. I got to ensure that I graduate in May. If I don't play again then it's fine. I had a great softball career. It was a good run and fun while it lasted," said Fryday. Coach Johnson would sure love to have Megan back playing next season. "I would be excited to see her healthy and playing again. I just hope she can juggle that nursing schedule with the softball schedule and come back to finish her career the way she wanted to," said Johnson. "She pays great attention to detail, she's a hard worker, and she's a competitor. She's everything I look for in a student-athlete and she shows it everyday." Johnson obviously shows how much he admires Megan and is going to need a player like her now that Alyssa Calderon, Kristen Knorr, and Sarah Almasy are gone due to graduation. Having Megan come back would be huge to this roster and her leadership skills will definitely be needed. But that is a question that can not be answered until Megan comes to a decision herself.
Prior to Caldwell, Megan was selected as the team's MVP three times at Mission Hills High School in California. She was also named a scholar athlete and the Most Improved Player at Mission Hills.
Two Time CACC Player of the Week
ECAC Player of the Week
All-CACC Second Team
All Region Second Team
NFCA Second Team
ECAC First Team All-Star
9 Home Runs
.364 Slugging Percentage
204 Total Bases
17 Stolen Bases
"I no longer could physically help the team reach our goals last season but I still was going to be an important part of the team mentally. I had to keep everyone positive. I had to encourage the people who needed to step up and play at a different position. I really had to fulfill my role as a senior captain. My hope is that I will be able to balance the rigorous nursing schedule with our softball schedule. I want one last shot at playing the game I love."